England, Cheshire, Marriage Bonds and Allegations (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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England, Cheshire, Marriage Bonds and Allegations, 1606-1900
This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Cheshire,  England
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Location of Cheshire, England
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Record Description
Record Type Marriage Bonds and Allegations
Collection years 1606-1900
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Cheshire Archives and Local Studies

What is in This Collection?

This collection contains an index of marriage bonds and allegations from the county of Cheshire for the years 1606-1900. The original records are held at the Cheshire Archives.

Marriage allegations and bonds were sworn statements filed by a bride and groom as part of a marriage license application. The allegation stated that there was no known reason that the marriage should not take place; bonds contractually obligated the signers to pay a sum of money if the allegation was incorrect. Until 1733, marriage bonds were written partly in Latin but the wording was standardized. Furthermore, the printed forms that were in use by the 1690s also help in deciphering the records.


For a list of the parishes which historically made up this county with links to more information about each of them, see the Cheshire Parishes page.

Until 1847, the Diocese of Chester covered large portions of Lancashire and Yorkshire, so some parishes from these two counties may be present in this collection. It could be helpful to use the Historical Jurisdictions Map to locate pre-1851 parish boundaries.

What Can These Records Tell Me?

Marriage Bonds and Allegations include:

  • Names of bride and groom
  • Date and place of marriage
  • Whether the individuals were single or widowed

The records often include:

  • Parents’ name
  • Gender
  • Age

Collection Content

Sample Records

John Smith
Name John Smith
Event Type Intended marriage
Event Date 30 Aug 1872
Event Place Cheshire, England
Gender Male
Age 21
Spouse's Name Jane Shepherd Yee
Spouse's Age 19
Spouse's Father's Name Thomas Tee

How Do I Search This Collection?

Before searching, it is best to know the following information:

  • Name of the person
  • Date range for the record

Search the Index

Search by name by visiting the Collection Page.
  1. Fill in the search boxes on the Collection Page with the information you have
  2. Click Search to show possible matches

How Do I Analyze the Results?

Compare each result from your search with what you know to determine if there is a match. This may require viewing multiple records or images. Keep track of your research in a research log.

What Do I Do Next?

I Found the Person I Was Looking For, What Now?

  • Save or print a copy of the image if possible
  • If parents' names are listed search census records prior to marriage
  • Search census records after the marriage to find the bride and groom as a new family
  • If the bride or groom's marital status indicates widow or widower, look for prior marriages
  • Use ages to search for birth records
  • Continue to search the index to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives

I Can’t Find the Person I’m Looking For, What Now?

  • Be careful using the listed age to estimate a birth year. Rather than listing actual ages, clerks often wrote in 21 as the age of both the bride and groom to show that they each were of legal age
  • Try variations of given names and surnames. An individual might have been listed under a middle name, a nickname, or an abbreviation of their given name
  • Names were often spelled as scribes heard them. Pay attention to how the name should have been pronounced and try spelling variations that could have that pronunciation
  • Vary the search terms. For example, search by either the given name or surname, or expand the date range to return broader list of results which can then be examined for matches
  • Search the records of nearby parishes. For this particular collection, this step may require finding records in the bordering English counties of Lancashire to the north, Derbyshire to the east, Staffordshire or Shropshire to the south, or in the Welsh counties of Denbighshire and Flintshire to the west
  • Consult the England Record Finder to find other records

Citing This Collection

Citations help you keep track of places you have searched and sources you have found. Identifying your sources helps others find the records you used.

Collection Citation

"England, Cheshire, Marriage Bonds and Allegations, 1606-1900." Database. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : 14 June 2016. Cheshire Record Office, Chester.

Record Citation:
When looking at a record, the citation is found below the record.

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